Two months-normally quite different the one from the other. August is the absolute high point for Tourists activity, summer holidays' - September the end of summer, and the arrival in force of the "pensioner" holidaymakers!
For me - this year - things were quieter and calmer!
After a clean sweep out, I was pleased to find myself in the general position of being able to do what I wanted, without stress, cooking, arranging things, sorting out problems - no visits, no Tourists - just peace and quiet, and the ability to look at the other poor people whose homes were invaded by tourists from here, there and everywhere - before going home and partaking of a nice meal, in calm - followed by a Siesta - in the calm!
I had only one period of visits to look forward to, in September, which changed the routine just a little bit.
August started off (as I said in the last episode) with the pre-programmed Health visits, the regular 3 monthly ones.
Vampires to seep off blood, Heart specialist to pedal a bike for, and a General practitioner to listen to "more exercise" - less food - less alcohol - no smoking - diats - and so on.....! In other words, if you want to live longer - don't live!
8am - pedalling a bicycle, for what seems like hours, whilst being asked questions about Rugby and the Scottish team chances in the next competition!
Panting and sweating, and being asked - "You all right"?
Jeez - good thing it's only once a year!
Vampire - needle in, valuable drops of rich red liquid being tapped off, and questions about "what's the weather like in Scotland in Autumn?"
How the devil am I supposed to know - I haven't lived there for over 50 years!
GP - "Blood test impeccable mr. le marquis!" (he sounded a little bit disappointed) "But We could lose 5-8 kilos, couldn't We!"
My suggestion that "WE could indeed, so I'll let him start" - was only appreciated and interpeted as "British Humour"!
I meant it!
"We" finally decided that - just to keep me busy, and to keep his other Doctor friends ticking over in this period of Holidays, an X-ray would be a good idea!
What of....? Well - let's start with the "articulations" which means the joints!
"We" know there are some problems there anyway, so let's have a more detailed look.
They call it "artisklerosis" or something similar!
I asked myself and the Doctors - how come the Heart specialist didn't note it - just a couple of days ago?
Well - he probably did, but for your age, it's normal, so it's not a disturbing factor.......!
Just got to keep an eye on it, and make sure it doesn't develop too far...!
Yeez - and I thought that's what they had cut me open and laid down the three bye-passes for - to "de-chalk" my arteries!
Well - never mind, just have to get on with it!
Arthrose is also present, but I knew that, and I knew it was getting worse, some people call it "Goute" - but I don't like Bordeaux red claret, and I'm not too sure you can get goute in the elbows, shoulders, fingers etc...!
Probably all that "healthy sport" as a younger person! Over use of joints and so on, and they call it HEALTHY!
So - after all these discoveries and inspections, I decided that, whilst awaiting my September visitors, I would have a L A R G E P A U S E !
This lasted until the 20th August, when I suddenly thought I should have done something!
You know, one of those strange feelings that you've forgotten something important!
So it was - I'd forgotten to fill out the annual forms, get them stamped at the local town hall, and send them off!
These are forms testifying to the fact that I am still alive - so I can still have my pensions!
Just having spent days and days and much effort to prove I was indeed alive and kicking, I'd forgotten to send off the proof, and share the fact with others!
Stress again - but I sorted it out with a couple of phone calls - a couple of postage stamps - a couple of envelopes and a couple of minutes walk to the post box!
Because it's "administration" I also sent a couple of copies by e-mail - now THEY can't deny having received them!
Yearly routine, although why it has to be done in the height of summer and holidays - I can't say! One of the Pensions asks me to do it TWICE a year, which is a pain, pain!
So - all this brought me to the end of August, and I started to plan a little for the visits in September.
The weather also was playing silly!
Always hot in August, it is also normally a dry heat, but not this year!
A dampish, sultry heat - ideal for suffering to the maximum from joint problems -installed itself for weeks on end!
This is also the traditional time for trying to figure out how to pay the winter electric bills!
No - not last winter's, they've been paid, but next winter's!
Makes you feel cooler, thinking about the cold and the heating, then it makes you hot with rage when you think about the price!
Swings and roundabouts, I suppose, but I think I'm like most people, the so called "Utility" bills are eating more and more into a monthly budget.
They seem to be allowed to rise just as they wish, but the salaries and pensions don't!
Nor do the aids/allocations and all the rest of the nonsense from Governmental sources.
I understand there are even people working in the Social Security offices of local government who are their own best customers - so little do they earn!
It certainly does seem that the gaps between the 75% rich and the 25% middle or poor is getting 100% bigger!
And the gap between the 25% middle class and the75% poor classes is almost no longer present!
In fact "middle class" is almost non-existant!
Well - the Politicians and fat cats will just have to await and accept the next revolution and the lopping off of a few more heads!
It's no longer Aristocrats, they are amongst the poorest in the land, it's those Doctors, Dentists,Bankers, Politicians etc....
I suppose the time will come ....but not in my life, I fear!
Maybe they think we'll calm down or something!
Hey guys - I can't pay my bills with the money you spend on Athletic teams and things like that.
How about more nuclear power stations...it's cheaper, cleaner and better!
For athletics, just give me and thousands of others nice things to look at - cheaply!
Here's an example:
OR EVEN NICER:
After all - these things can't cost a lot...........can they? With the rest, you can build loads of nuclear power sites so we don't have to pay anything more!
So now we were in the mid September stage, my latest, and probably last for the year visitors, had arrived.
This year there were only "minor" problems - a wisdom tooth that refused to come out, and hurt like hell, and finally necessitated a charming French lady dentist to "cool the fevered brow"
I'm sure it's no party being on holiday and having toothache. After all - you want to crunch on those nice looking things on the table - but you can't!
Can make you .....grumpy!
Really, I should get my records out and write a book about:
"Things that can & do happen - on holiday!"
Whether it would be a best seller or not, I'm not sure, but one thing is certain, it would be a very thick book, with no ending, 'cos there isn't one....."The un-ending story" one could say.......!
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So there we are - just leaves me October and November then we'll be up to date, and my personal account of 2009 will be over and done!
Whether I'll be able to do the same sort of thing in a year's time remains in the stars......
(mr le marquis) ------- 30600 Vauvert, France ------ Déc 2009